As more hobbyists raise pigeons, California town grows angry

FOWLER, Calif. — What started out as a backyard hobby has turned into a suburban turf war that has ruffled feathers across town.

A few years ago, two families in a quiet subdivision on the western edge of Fowler began raising pigeons. One bred homing pigeons, which have a remarkable ability to find their way home from hundreds of miles away. The other raised "high flyers" -- pigeons that circle around for hours on end. They say none of the neighbors complained.

But this spring, a third neighbor took up the hobby. By midsummer, he had somewhere between 50 and 70 pigeons. Often, he would let them fly around all day. The birds would perch on neighbors' roofs and fences -- and poop everywhere.

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